An annual report by the nonprofit organization Mental Health America (MHA) claims that 40 million Americans are dealing with a mental illness such as depression and anxiety. According to the report about 56% of the adults with a mental illness still are not being medically treated. Despite new steps taking by the government, 19 percent of adults with mental illness in states that didn’t expand Medicaid remain uninsured, while 13 percent of these adults in states that did expand Medicaid remain uninsured.
Paul Gionfriddo, president and CEO of MHA, explained in a news release, “Once again, our report shows that too many Americans are suffering, and far too many are not receiving the treatment they need to live healthy and productive lives… Mental illness touches everyone. We must improve access to care and treatments, and we need to put a premium on early identification and early intervention for everyone with mental health concerns.”
According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), depression alone had an economic burden of $210.5 billion on the United States in 2010. CDC officials said in a statement, “Although effective treatments are available, many individuals with depression do not have access to treatment or do not take advantage of services… If not effectively treated, depression is likely to become a chronic disease. Just experiencing one episode of depression places an individual at a 50 percent risk for experiencing another episode, and further increases the chances of having more depression episodes in the future.”
The report ranked the 50 states from best to worst for mental health care. Connecticut ranked No. 1 as the best state for mental health care, followed by Massachusetts and Vermont, while Nevada ranked worst, preceded by Arizona and Oregon.